Spreadsheet Ninjas, Part 2

A likeminded sailor requested an update as to how our spreadsheets are working out for us (yes!). They’re not as exciting as swimming with sharks, or as beautiful as mountainous vistas in Moorea, but they’re a critical component to our cruising experience, so I’m happy to comply.

Above, you can see the format that has been the most efficient for us. All the shelf stable food items we have tucked away are listed in first column; I don’t bother to keep track of anything we eat within a week or two of purchase, such as fruits, veggies, and snacks. The columns in pink indicate the quantity and total number of the item we have; each subsequent column represents an individual container and the number of each item per container; the row in yellow indicates where in the boat that container can be found. The ‘total’ column contains a simple function that sums the quantity indicated in the entirety of the row.

And voila! If you need something, you can search for it, saving you, the galley master, untold hours of frustrating unpacking and repacking of the boat. I can also see quickly that we have an absurd quantity of baking soda onboard, but need to purchase crackers, beef bouillon, and dried blueberries. It’s not foolproof—the spreadsheet requires continuous updating, which can be an annoying additional step when I’m hungry, digging for something, and the boat is tilting thirty degrees. It motivates me, usually, to set aside the time to restock the galley, instead of searching for items individually when they’re needed.

It’s still a work in progress. I’d like to incorporate an ideal quantity of each item to have onboard, but this depends on where we are, and how often we can grocery shop.

And we should be able to do plenty of grocery shopping soon—we are but 116 miles away from Samoa, and will hopefully make landfall tomorrow, which will be Monday as we have recently two-stepped across the International Dateline. Arriving on Sunday would require spending the day quarantined on the boat; instead, we'll be able to go through customs, take really long naps, and hit the markets to stretch our legs and restock our fresh supplies.